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Romney 38, Us 13, Richard Mourdock 5, Virginia 5, Ohio 5, Cecile Richards 4, Florida 4, Mourdock 4, Sam Stein 3, Nevada 3, Obama 3, John Harwood 3, Mitt Romney 3, Andrea Mitchell 3, Indiana 3, Washington 3, Iowa 3, Olay 2, Msnbc 2, Chicago 2,
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  MSNBC    NOW With Alex Wagner    News/Business. Alex Wagner.  
   Forces driving the day's stories. New.  

    October 25, 2012
    9:00 - 10:00am PDT  

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red eye flights on air force one, early morning doughnuts and a newfound zeal for economic equality. it's thursday, october 25th and this is "now." joining me today, cnbc chief washington correspondent john harwood of "the new york times," "time" magazine white house correspondent michael scherer in the flesh on the set, and msnbc contributor, sam stein of "the huffington post", and politico senior white house reporter, glenn thrush. a tale of two messages, the romney campaign is pushing the theory that they're in the lead, down the stretch. with an e-mail this morning read, we're feeling the momentum. the president is playing like
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he's behind and fighting for every vote. after a red eye flight from l.a. the president was up early for a rally in tampa and delivered doughnuts to firefighters by 7:30 this morning. obama the underdog versus romney the ascent dant is the dominant narrative on the trail. >> patrol this in my voice is getting hoarse. have to keep on keeping on. >> we're going to win november 6th. >> we're going to pull an all-nighter. no sleep. >> we've had a number of debates lately. you know they have really propelled our campaign. >> i believe in you. i need you to keep believing in me. >> the obama campaign is slipping. and shrinking. >> we always knew this was going to be a close race from the start. folks in your business were writing me off a year ago, saying there's no way i would win. >> if i'm elected -- no, when i'm elected -- >> i've come to ask you for your vote. >> i'm optimistic, not just about winning, we are going to
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win, by the way. >> don't boo. vote! vote! >> the obama campaign is also out with this new ad showing consequences of staying at home. >> 537, the number of votes that changed the course of american history. >> florida is too close to call. >> the difference between what was and what could have been. so this year, if you're thinking that your vote doesn't count, that it won't wamatter back the were there were probably at least 537 people who felt the same way. >> there's at least one vote the president knows he can count on, he will be taking his own advice and voting early in chicago later today. and as team obama make as peel for love at ballot box a new "time" poll gives the president a five-point lead among likely voters in ohio. the president's womping governor
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romney, 60-30% two are tied at 45% among those vet to vote. surprising no one, signs of movement nationally as well. a new gallup poll reversing romney's gains whittling the lead to to three-point spread. the approval rating back up to 53%. team romney may be claiming mitt mentum, is it possible team obama laid the groundwork for a last-minute surge? sam stein, there are a lot of narratives out there on the campaign trail. is it possible -- at the end of the day, i don't know, i have so many questions about the poll numbers, we talk about them all of the time. i'm not convinced of any accuracies. in terms of -- i say that and we're going to talk about them -- but in terms of, you know, romney has a lot to gain by saying the wind is at our sails. >> sure. >> qualifies him to be a contender. obama, obviously, has a lot of
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gain in terms of getting people to the bat lol boxes if they think there's a problem. >> sure. these are reflection of strategies. romney calculated a shift to the middle, abrupt shift to the middle towards the end of the campaign and ride the momentum nationally to overcome the president's advantage across the board. the obama campaign long held those is much like when they're fighting hillary clinton in 2008 primaries a game of numbers, a mathematical enterprise and so long as he's winning ohio, nevada, wisconsin hi wins. and we're starting to see now in the polls, and there's eight daily tracking polls, which is too much, but we're starting to see there is a slight uptick back towards obama since that debate. if that's the case, sort of blows up the romney campaign strategy which is that you stand on all of the scales at once and protepels you to victory. again the state numbers are also in obama's favor, in addition to that ohio poll number that was a
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virginia poll which showed the president doing well in the state. he's got more pathways to victory. if you talk to the people, both campaigns, they both express comfort but you get more sense of confidence in the obama people this morning. >> michael, mark halperin went to chicago and talked to a couple of folks -- a couple folks named jim messina, david axelrod. david plouffe pushed back, plouffe calling romney's bluff, i wanted to say that because it rhymes. plouffe says, in terms of the narrative they're trying to develop to all of you, florida and virginia are moving in their direction, their spending and travel schedule doesn't reflect that. if team romney feels so good about florida, pullout. i believe they're overstating their electoral college situation. team obama is convinced they have this. and yet the president is out there giving out doughnuts and also these things, we have official copies of the obama plan for jobs in middle class security which is thinner than i
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thought it would be. >> not just thin, a lot of pictures. >> that's how you win them over. >> the -- you're absolutely right. the obama campaign feels like they're winning, feel if the election were held today they would win, feel like their position is going to get bet, they feel like they know the electorate and feels like romney knows the electorate and is not telling the truth. obama can still lose this. you're not going to hear dave plouffe say that but the polls and the swing states, there's a percentage that has not yet broken, not saying where they're going to vote. and history tells us that at the end of elections in which you have headwinds against an incumbent, most of the last-minute break goes against the incumbent. you can say two-thirds go against the incumbent. in states where obama's maybe even in the lead but only got 47%, 46% of the vote he could lose that state if he doesn't have enough early votes in the bank and unexpected voters in the bank.
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i do think in is clear that right now, as we stand, you know, romney would rather be obama than romney. but again, that doesn't mean -- >> that may be true existentially. >> trying to become obama with the policy position. >> glenn, you know, to that romney narrative, that this sort of we are insurgents, this is happening for us, that is as much to drive home the narrative republicans want to believe and we'll maybe get voters out to the polls because this guy has a chance, he's convinced me because he said we've, you know, been convinced. >> it's like woodstock. we are strong, we are golden. i mean -- basically he is the, to quote woody alan -- he is the shark. we talk about political narratives and most really don't matter. this one really does. >> yeah. >> because if he is not swimming forward and loses the sense of momentum, he's really in trouble because he doesn't have the ground game.
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i mean, there is, to a certain extent, a sense, i think, among the romney people, they are in deeper trouble than they thought in ohio. i think they're looking at numbers, it's been very hard to move the needle and they have to push the line of a national wave and you hear them, for instance, they told us a staffer told us earlier this week, that they thought he was going to win by 305 points. with 305 electoral votes. to a certain extent they've got to have the surge wave strategy because they're not going to make it in the trench warfare. >> look at the numbers, john, early voting, obama's lead in iowa up 54,000, north carolina, 95,000, ohio, 43,000, mussina in the hal print interview i mentioned to michael, talks about the minority vote, which basically the romney team, it seems to have forfeited. minority vote willing reach all-time high, projected as high as 28% of all voters in the 2012
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election, most new registrants are under 30 and nearly all four and five are youth, women -- 4 in 5 are youth, women, african-american or latino. >> well, what the minority proportion of the electorate is could be the key to the election. whites were 74% in 2080. that number has come down in each of the last five presidential elections. if it keeps coming down, that's huge for obama because he's dominating african-americans and they have a high turnout propensity. latinos he's dominating but they show less interest in the race. young voters show less interest in the rate. with erlarly voting, romney's ahead by 15 points among people who say they're going to vote election day. how do the two things wash out? i do think it's clear that obama has an advantage electorally. i don't believe mitt romney has momentum anymore.
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it hadn't been prv tonigoven ob got a surge going, could be very slight but this thing is close. the purpose of the momentum argument that the romney people are making is there's something called a bandwagon effect in politics and people want to be on the winning side. so there's a sense of -- it's not a huge effect but it's something, if they get that going in their favor, that could be of help to them. >> can i make the point, one of the things obama has gone from in the election he's done it before and they've run the campaign and they've had three, four years to duplicate what they did. when they are doing get out the vote stuff, early vote stuff, they're not saying who can we find to get to the polls, they're microtargeting, trying to get sporadic voters. media hits it's not just leno, which he did last night, but it's african-american radio. >> calling deejays. >> and they're doing it in away where, they want to build up a
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tally that will last them through that voting day itself. they're trying to get people out that wouldn't go out normally so they can have that buffer. you know, there is a benefit to having run a presidential campaign and no one talks about it but these guys have been there. >> the sophistication of the microtarg microtargeting, we've talked about this, i've said the indom anyonable, a book, looking at consumer behavioral patterns, who is going to vote and how they're going to vote. the obama team employed that logic and strategy and the spore raddic voters -- >> sorry, in nevada and colorado close senate races in 2010. the democratic machinery knows what it takes to take a close race and turn into unexpected win and that's going help in both states the issue with colorado is enthusiasm among hispanics, hard to get at. nevadas a machine state, it's easier to get at. there's a disadvantage there. i think you're right, the obama
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people, we heard someone in ohio, republican in ohio say that the romney outreach effort reminded them of a high school civics class. >> makes this look really good. >> technical question, what's the difference between indubable and innumber itable. >> something for the dictionary. a appreciate the testing of my handle on words that i use. we have to go to break, conveniently. the "r" in romney doesn't stand for redistribution. can the republican nominee make a convincing case for economic mobility? we'll talk home ec on "now." [ male announcer ] when this hotel added aflac to provide a better benefits package... oahhh! [ male announcer ] it made a big splash with the employees.
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following paul ryan's attempt yesterday to portray himself as a champion of the poor, mitt romney is set to lay out his business-friendly solutions for the middle class in a major economic speech in ames, iowa, friday. while romney likes to flaunt his 25 years in the private sector, the current occupant of the oval office likes to remind voters that romney's tenure at bain capital cuts both ways. >> i spent my life in the private sector. i know why jobs come and why they go. >> he has a one-point plan, to make sure that folks at the top play by a different set of rules. you can make a lot of money and pay lower tax rates than somebody who makes a lot less. ship jobs overseas and get tax breaks for it. invest in a company bankrupted, lay off the workers, strip way
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their pensions and you still make money. >> while romney pushes his bain in iowa, one state overlies a darker role that private equity and play in communities. jesse jackson among several people arrested in the latest wave of protests centered around a manufacturing company purchased by bain capital six years ago and in the process of shutting down and moving operations overseas to china resulting in the loss of 170 jobs. r r romney has since left bain he's profit. romney himself lass done well as a result of bain's work with the company. according to his released 2011 tax returns romney transferred $701,703 worth of stock to the tyler charitable foundation. it allows to deduct the full
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value of the stock and avoid paying capital gains taxes. >> corporations are people, my friend. we can raise taxes -- of course they are. every new corporation is earned but it goes to people. >> indeed. but which people? laid off workers at sensata or private equity folks at bain capital? mitt romney will play out his base, eliminating the estate tax, 20% across the board tax cut for all income brakers. voters decide whether to put a jobs creator in charge of creating jobs is the right thing to do. john harwood, master of all things relating to the economy, talk about romney and his role at bain because we've sort of -- we focused -- it's the focus certainly of the obama campaign throughout the summer. we are seeing it back in action, et cete especially in targeted ad buys in the midwest. seems like the obama campaign believes it's a good message to
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keep hammering home in the final stretch. >> very effective over the summer, they hurt romney. heat been under water in his favorables in the polls for a long time. started to creep up and get to parody from debate performances but i think it's a time the obama campaign thinks they need to go back and push that message, which has been effective for them. >> michael, i love nothing more than quoting someone directly to their face. i'm going to quote you in the november 5th issue of "time," is that possible? i don't know. it sayed that on the card. on flat screens now, you write, from marietta to toledo, one edgy chord being struck, mitt romney, not one of us. obama uses to paint romney as a rich uncle pennybags defined by cayman islands holdings, swiss bank account and opposition to obama's auto industry bailout. >> i wonder if it's libelist to call someone a libelist rag.
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>> sam stein's a big public figure. >> massive. >> right. >> truth is always the best. >> all fun and games here on set. >> this is actually one of most interesting things in the last couple of weeks. obama campaign's running a siried of tv adds that end with in ohio only, not one of us. go back through the history of using that phrase in politics it's basically jesse helms, people saying these out of staters, these big city folk, they're not one of us. obama is using it in a totally different way. he's saying not one of us, i say rich uncle pennybags but the guy who owns the nuclear power plant in simpson's land. and it is really clearly been effective. >> not a blue collar guy like obama? >> sort of the great analogy. obama had trouble with the blue collar vote in 2008 and now like -- >> shifting the ladder shifting that it's now --
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>> as ted strickland told me a couple of days ago obama benefitted in ohio but running against mitt romney. it's the comparison that matters. and he's been able to establish that comparison. romney just has not fought the battle. >> the only man in the united states capable of making barack obama look like jackie gleason in "the honeymooners is mitt romney. the area where economic argument romney has been putting forth is hitting home. in the a.p. poll today, i'm not sure numbers are kosher, but there's parody in the a.p. poll in terms of the women's vote. that's a huge issue for obama, huge issue in ohio and elsewhere, and it reflects the romney campaign's success in making the gender issue to disappear based on the economic record. >> don't believe any poll that shows romney even with women or obama even with men. it's not proven. >> again, these national polls, i mean, they're relevant to a certain extent but when it really is all about virginia, ohio, florida and wisconsin.
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if you look at polling in those states, you can see gender gaps. >> particularly ohio. >> yeah. and in, you know, romney's plagued by the let detroit go bankrupt comment and it's hurting him in ohio and he's tried to whitewash that part of his record. but that one has stuck. i think it's, you know, because "the new york times" put a difficult headline on the op-ed he wrote and it's just stuck. >> you could argue the substance of the op-ed is not -- as much as romney's trying to conflate what obama -- >> there are other areas where he's changed substantively and he's manage to pull it off but on this one it's tough for him to reverse the perception. you know if it holds, the auto bailout will end up being a critical moment and it happened in 2009 in late 2008. it could end up being that critical moment that decided the 2012 election. >> the headline was not written by romney but there's no evidence there was private money
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available to sustain those companies. >> i think mitt romney's fudging what he actually wanted to do on the bailout. >> it's also true that when he wrote that op-ed he was not calling for liquidation of the american auto industry which is what the obama campaign says on the stump that's what it was about. >> that's not true. that could have been the effect of the policy. >> their you need government capital to get them to manage bankruptcy, without any of that you would have ended up in liquidation. >> those mitt romney's prescription of your is interesting as it pertains to the auto bailout i -- >> you're starting to talk like romney. >> oh lord. i want to talk about friday, i thought it was -- i mean it's shocking, amazing, i don't know, the words are not coming to me, that paul ryan was trying to pock about poverty yesterday given where he's been in terms of his own policies and helping people to lift them out of economic duress.
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they have made these pivots, glenn, that this campaign has been shameless in saying one thing one day and another the other day. can romney -- he's doing this thing in ames friday, trying to lay out some economic plan, he's walked back 20% across the board tax cuts in the debates, the numbers were flying around in the ether like ufos. can he do anything to mitigate the bain damage in the next two weeks? can he lay out an economic policy that will, i don't know, warm the hearts of voters who are skeptical about uncle pen anybags. >> i don't know. one of the reasons why ryan is able to do this is, obama does not talk about the issue of poverty. he has expanded medicaid. he has been a fair to decent president from what i hear in terms of progressive groups in terms of analyzing his budget priorities but he doesn't talk about it because it would expose a vulnerability with the center. it's a clever bit of marketing. it's not resonant.
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ryan had that terrible incident a couple of weeks ago with the soup kitchen where he -- >> cleaning. >> demanded dishes be dirtied so he could clean them. but what they are simply trying to do is what romney did in the foreign policy debate, soften him up in the way that they softened him up on issues of war and peace, taking the edge off in terms of rich and poor, and the 47 argument which is the big tough one for them the issue is not policy for romney. it's whether people identify with him and when they feel he identifies with them and he can do that independent of a new policy speech. he came across not as rich uncle pennybags. >> i understand. but the summary of the speech yesterday was that we have to solve poverty by cutting anti-poverty programs basically. some point we have to look beyond the facade they're trying to put up and say, is this actually smart? >> romney may want to leave the top hat and the bag of coins at the door when he tries to soften the uncle pennybags thing.
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>> president obama wades into the controversy, you need to turn your phone off, over candidate richard mourdock's rape comments while governor romney tries to keep a safe distance. any such thing as safe distance in this debate? planned parenthood president cecile richards joins us next to discuss. any seth works boston area renaissance fairs, haunted houses and nightclubs. he hawks from his bone shoppe cart. he sells through mirroring potential customer temperaments. watch "your business" sundays 7:30 on msnbc. [ horn honks ] [ male announcer ] you start your day... love you, too. ...thinking about what's important to you --
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how big a mistakes that i have made but you know, in the years that i've been around, i made a few anderson, and i'm asked for people's understanding and forgiveness when i own up to it. >> talk damage control and women's issues when planned parenthood cecile richards joins us on "now." [ male announcer ] how do you make america's favorite recipes? just begin with america's favorite soups. bring out chicken broccoli alfredo. or best-ever meatloaf. go to campbellskitchen.com for recipes, plus a valuable coupon. campbell's. it's amazing what soup can do. to start her own interior design business. she's got a growing list of clients she keeps in touch with using e-mail marketing from constantcontact.com. constantcontact is easy and affordable. it lets her send out updates and photos that showcase her expertise and inspire her customers
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let me make a very simple proposition. rape is rape. it is a crime. and so these various distinctions about rape and, you know, don't make too much sense to me. >> that was president obama on "the tonight show" weighing in on richard mourdock's comments about rape. the controversy started tuesday when the republican senate candidate from indiana said this
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during a debate -- >> i believe that life begins at conception. the only exception i have for to have an abortion is in that case of the life of the mother. i just -- i struggled with it myself for a long time but i came to realize life is that gift from god and i think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that god intended to happen. >> yesterday mourdock attempted to clarify his remarks. >> i want to assure every woman who hears this, who reads the stories of this, to twist and suggest that somehow i'm saying god approves of rape is the wrong thing because it's not what i was saying. certainly not what i intended. >> team romney has tried to distance itself from mourdock's words with a statement saying, quote, governor romney disagrees with richard mourdock's comments and they do not reflect his views. but that is as far as he's gone. romney sticking with his
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endorsement of mourdock and not asking the republican to take down an ad featuring romney that debuted this week. the controversy comes as polls indicate romney is doing better among women's voters. at poll taken before mourdock's comments romney erased obama's lead among women and is tied with him. that same survey shows that the president has eliminated romney's edge among men. cecile richards the president of planned parenthood. today joining us on behalf of the obama campaign. great to see you. these disasters, these disasters keep coming up and ones of the republicans as own making. >> right. >> i wonder how do you grade team rop's handling of this latest controversy? >> i think it's a disaster. the fact that this is the one senate candidate that mitt romney has endorsed is running ads for, the best tweet i saw on this last night, if this is who mitt romney wants in the united states senate you can only imagine who he wants in the united states supreme court.
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and what i -- you know, putting the polls aside this poll makes no sense and others have said that. i got back frnew hampshire and virginia, republican men and women are saying this is ridiculous. bottom line, why we should have a congress, 83% of which is men, making women's medical decisions. i think fueling the fire. >> it's amazing, also, that both with the two most incendiary comments about women's and bodies, you have aiken and mourdock tied to the romney-ryan ticket, now you have as you said one senate candidate that romney has sort of given his stamp of approval to having ads with saying this stuff about rape and god's intentions. when we talk about the issues, the president weighing in on leno about mourdock's comment but was brought up the question of the supreme court. i want to play those and talk about we're not talking about that more broadly in the
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campaign season. >> you've got a supreme court that, you know, typically, a president is going to have another couple of appointments during the course of his term, and you know roe vs. wade is probably hanging in the balance. >> this, the notion that the next president's able to appoint at least one, if not two, justices is a big deal, and yet i don't think that the american public -- that could be something that people vote on and yet i feel like it remains underexposed or underdiscussed. >> a lot of folks are paying attention to that. it's interesting the tactic of the romney campaign has been this election, one, he's of course taken the most extreme positions of anyone running on the republican side in decades, happy to sign a bill overturning roe. basically their message has been these issues don't matter. these are small issues. that's their strategy. never to say our position is the right one.
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it's simply to say these really don't matter and try to say these are not economic issues. for any woman never able to get health care coverage that's an economic issue. anyone woman paying $100 a month on birth control, that's an economic issue. i think he has intentionally muddied the waters and tried to confuse folks about his true position. >> there's always been -- we've talked a lot about romney and the base and how much he needs to do to apiece them and whether he can go out there. i think that weird ballet of the statement issued but not retracting any of the endorsements of mourdock is evidence of team romney not sure how far they can go in terms of walking back. >> the one thing beyond the social issue question i wanted to ask about, the a.p. poll is an outlier but there has been erosion across a variety of polls in terms of the president's female support. why that is happening? and do you think the romney people are succeeding in make ang economic argument towards women and not focusing on the
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oeshl? . >> romney has b. put millions of dollars behind ads saying i'm not that bad on contraception and abortion. it's not that -- he's not proudly stating his positions, i'm proud to overturn roe, defund planned parenthood. he's put this woman forward if you've seen the ad, trying to say i'm not that bad. he knows these issues hurt him with women, and with men, frankly. we've seen it over and over, say one thing in one audience and do another. that's clearly in the debate. the fact that mitt romney could not answer a basic question where he would be on equal pay, which is a fundamental economic issue, shows how much they don't want to stand behind their positions which of course is to oppose lilly ledbetter fair pay act. >> does it alarm you to see that erosi erosion? >> of course. all of the research shows when women know how extreme mitt
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romney is on these positions, they won't vote for him, and menace well. the important thing, as this election here, these last two weeks a lot of women are focusing on this election, they don't have the luxury of sitting around like we do and watching all of the ads and this and that. they're beginning to focus. and the women i'm seeing, again, i'm in all of the battleground states now, women are alarmed the a. the extreme positions that mitt romney is taking. >> what's also interesting, i started to talk about this a second ago, the conservative baz is restive. they are falling in line, i don't think you're going to see, you know, ann coult voting for barack obama. let's attack a listen. not a lot 0 love for conservatives in the republican party except now the party will take anything they can get to win. they always tell us it's the independents and reason for that
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pintds are independents are not liberals, so whoever wins with the independents proves the point that they win without the base of the party. now the democrats are not embarrassed of their base. republicans, in large part are. except around election time where they'll take it. >> i would actually argue the opposite, the president never wants to go hard core and with the left base and has spent a lot of time being a moderate, you know, sort of middle ground kind of guy. mitt romney's the one terrified of the conservative base. >> i think lyimbaugh has a poin, the romney campaign made a gamble and one paying off they can move away from these positions and they were not going to get yelled at. anyone who believes in trickle down economics has been fine watching romney saying i'm not going to give a tax cut to the
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top 1%. >> i'm here for peace. >> and the social issues, too, anyone vehemently anti-abortion has been fine watching romney get up in a debate saying i'm not that guy in the primary. and i think it was brilliant, in a way for them to realize they would get the base in a point they had no other option. >> i will say, it's one thing to talk about tax poll circumstance one thing to talk about foreign policy. social issues and the women's right to choose, the men of the word rape, it's a loaded term, it's something people remember. when trying to have it both ways it's hard to pull the wool over the eyes. >> for women these are not social issues. these are health care issues, economic issue. the romney campaign tried to paint every woman's health care issue as a social issue. look at basic things he's going to get rid of, gender rating for women, the fact we don't have to pay more in insurance than men. the fact that preventative care's not going to get covered
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on day one, that's an economic women. i've seen women breast cancer survivors who finally can get health insurance for them, that is a basic economic issue. and that's where i feel like the romney campaign has missed the mark. >> cecile richards, thank you, as always, joining us. a pleasure to have you on the set. >> after the break in june president obama told a roomful of campaign donors he was confident the republican fever would break in the second term. as approval numbers rise could another republican-led congress keep the temperatures high? we'll discuss that, next. [ snoring ] ♪ [ snoring ] [ male announcer ] introducing zzzquil sleep-aid. [ snoring ] [ snoring ] [ male announcer ] it's not for colds, it's not for pain, it's just for sleep. [ snoring ] [ male announcer ] because sleep is a beautiful thing. [ birds chirping ]
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with scottrader streaming quotes, any way you want. fully customize it for your trading process -- from thought to trade, on every screen. and all in real time. which makes it just like having your own trading floor, right at your fingertips. [ rodger ] at scottrade, seven dollar trades are just the start. try our easy-to-use scottrader streaming quotes. it's another reason more investors are saying... [ all ] i'm with scottrade. here is something congress hasn't seen in a while, improving poll numbers. according to a new gallup poll, 21% of americans say they approve of the job congress is doing. and if that number doesn't sound
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great, consider this, it is eight points higher than the 13% congress registered last month. approval ratings of less than 30% portend a high turnover of seats but it's unclear if that will happen this year even as both parties ramp up efforts to take full control of congress. john harwood, 21%, maybe other years, something -- >> probably higher -- >> a steady plummet down. it's amazing, though, given the fact they've done nothing to address the fiscal cliff. i would say its worst job performance any time in last four to six years and numbers are rising. is it absence makes the heart grow fonder? >> yes. on the fiscal cliff in fairness, what you say about congress not doing anything on the fiscal cliff is the same as obama not doing anything. >> right. >> they can't solve it. you have to have an election to solve it. and i believe they will solve it afterwards. i do think that the polls show
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us that whether or not obama gets a surge at the end, there's not going to be a surge that kicks republicans out of the house. it's pretty clear that the wave just isn't there. and i think the likelihood is that we end up, if you had to bet right now you'd say odds greater than 50/50 we end up with the same three leaders after the election than we've got right now. >> there was an important caveat, that you say you think they will do something about the fiscal cliff. >> yes. >> and that, you know, we read reports, politico reporting that libelist rag reporting that, look, they may punt the see questers to 2014. it's a constant sort of kicking the can down the road. >> i think, if obama's re-elected the first phone call one of the first to john boehner and resume the grand bargain negotiations asap and you'll have something that may not be completed by the end of the year, in fact certainly will not be completed but i think in the first part of 2013, there is an
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opening so solve it. if i were betting i would say they would. >> it could prompt the approval rating of congress to go back down to 13% dealing with this type of legislation, the debt ceiling's going to happen in february or march but that's what prompted congress' approval rating to hit the tank. maybe benefiting by being at home in their districts. >> which is not good because they need to do the work of congress. >> spending a couple hundred million on tv selling themselves to the people and getting -- >> great point. >> -- to 20%. that's as high as they're getting. >> took out 15 million line of credit to help in house races. i guess 15 million buys you a couple percentage points. to the president's contention the fever's going to break come january, separate that statement from the fiscal cliff, because those are looming issues that can't be avoided, he's talked about immigration reform, said more about it in recent weeks, do you think that the if we have
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the same three leaders, that he's going to be able to get stuff down, anything done, before his second term is up. >> that's obama's core contention. talk about the weird des moines register situation where the president, they wanted that thing off the record and it turned out to be the clearest articulation of the second-term agenda outside of the -- >> no photos, exactly. >> no photos, right. no, but i mean, he laid it out clearly. we're going to have something that looks like a grand bargain, that is my intention. we have heard through the grapevine the republicans are saying the same thing. i'm skeptical, they have that conference and it's more conservative than it was last time. and the second big issue is immigration reform. i actually think on the second item he might have momentum considering what we're looking at. >> you think it's even a more conservative congress than now, in terms of the house republican caucus? >> you're getting rid of a couple of moderates, remaining
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republican moderates will not be there, no lugar and no olympia sno snowe. i said if obama wins are you going to hold that dinner in the oval room, you know, restaurant, and plot how to defeat him? they said, yes, that's our job, we have to figure out what to do in the next two years. there's wishful thinking on the part of the president to suspect all of the people will come to the table. he has to revamp his legislative strategy as well. >> go out to the links and play more golf. >> maybe. >> bowling. >> maybe that's it. maybe it's about bowling. >> that's the secret, bowling. >> speaking of the president expected to hold a campaign event in the next hour. a live look at richmond, virginia where he's set to speak. we'll bring you remarks after the break. apologize to glenn thrush for scolding him about his phone.
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that is all for us today. a big thanks to john, michael, glenn, my buddy, sam. sam, we both want to wish the executive producer of this show happy birthday, dana howler, the brains and the braun and the heart and the beauty behind the show. that's all for us. i'll see you back in new york tomorrow noon eastern when i'm joined by chris hayes, wes moore, rachel grady. check out traveling updates on facebook.com/nowwithalex. "andrea mitchell reports" is next. hello. >> hi, alex across the way. happy birthday, dana. coming up, president obama and mitt romney blitzing the swing states as new polls suggest, romney is closing in on the president's advance with women voters. we'll talk to democratic chair, congresswoman debbie wasserman schultz. washington democratic senator patty murray concerned
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that ohio could hold up the vote counting and tracking hurricane sandy next on "andrea mitchell reports." i'm glad we got cdw and cisco to design our data center. yeah, the cisco ucsc series server, with the intel xeon processors, help us scale smoothly, like a perfect golf swing. how was it before? clunky and full of unnecessary impediments. like charles' swing. i heard that.
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with cake! and presents! ah, that was good. too bad nobody could hear me. geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance. how's it going, tampa? >> cincinnati welcome. thank you so much. >> hello, nevada! >> that is one lech of a cedar rapids welcome. thank you so much. >> and right now on "andrea mitchell reports," frequent flyers, president obama and governor romney in a mad dash for votes. trying to persuade undecided women, president obama is hammering romney for supporting indiana senate candidate richard mourdock, despite mourdock's comments on rape and abortion. >> as we saw again this week, i don't think any politician in washington, most of whom are male, should be making health care decisions for women.

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